1. Which best describes where you are in your journey as a nail professional?
a. I’m in beauty school and anxious to make my place in the world.
b. I’ve completed beauty school, have found a salon home, and am deciding on the products I like best.
c. I’ve been in the industry a few years and feel I have mastered the product lines I work with. I’ve developed a few tricks of my own and am curious about a career in education.
d. I’ve got a steady clientele and waiting list, taken every manufacturer’s training I can find, never miss a beauty show, and have connected with lots of educators through social media.
2. When things don’t go my way, I…
a. Get anxious and nervous.
b. Look for a way to make the best of a bad situation.
c. Take a deep breath, take stock of what I have, and develop a new strategic plan.
d. Smile. Develop a new plan. No matter what happens, I’ve got this. Nobody will ever know there was a hiccup in the plan.
3. The thought of doing VIP and celebrity nails, press interviews, and product launches makes me…
a. Want to run away. I don’t like the spotlight.
b. A little nervous, I’ve never talked in front of a group, much less met a celebrity.
c. Excited. I’ve always wanted to meet some famous people.
d. Love this nail industry even more. The thought of sharing an awesome product with key influencers is thrilling. I know my products’ benefits inside and out and am eager to share.
4. When it comes to sleep, I…
a. Need a full 10 hours. Nothing gets in the way of sleep.
b. Try to get eight hours, no matter what I have on my plate.
c. Am OK when something occasionally interferes with my shuteye.
d. Am OK with missing out on sleep when getting ready for a big program. I’ll bank it ahead of time so I’m ready for anything.
5. The biggest reason I want to be a manufacturer educator is…
a. The money and free products — I’m tired of toiling behind the nail table.
b. To share what I know. I think I’m better than most nail techs out there.
c. To improve my skills while networking with others.
d. To cast the nail industry in a positive light and help others learn proven techniques for using products safely and profitably in the salon.
6. Aspects of education that interest me are…
a. Free or discounted products.
b. Participating in product research and development.
c. Collaborating on developing classes.
d. All of the above.
7. When I attend educational events, I…
a. Wonder why I am there. After all, I graduated from beauty school. What else is there?
b. Usually think it will be worth it. I can find at least one take-away that I can use.
c. End up taking lots of notes and asking lots of follow-up questions.
d. Take lots of notes and connect with the educators after the class to develop skills that boost my business. We learn from everyone we come in contact with. I want to have as much information and as many viewpoints as possible.
8. When I attend beauty trade shows, I…
a. Get as many free samples as possible. I’m in this to make money.
b. Take literature if it is given to me. It’s all just a sales pitch anyway.
c. Get into as many classes as I can. I can squeeze in walking the show floor in between.
d. Get a good spot in as many classes as possible. Make a point to introduce myself to the educators, thank them for their time, and ask about how to get started as a manufacturer’s educator.
9. People describe me as:
c. An enthusiastic team player
d. All of the above
10. When I think about nail skills…
a. Mine are better than others.
b. I’ve always got room for improvement.
c. We have a great knowledge pool and the more we share it, the better the nail industry as a whole.
d. Nothing would make me feel better than to have a student far exceed anything I could have done.
11. How far would you travel to deliver an educational message?
a. It depends on how long the program is and how much they are paying.
b. As long as I can be back in my bed tonight, I’m happy.
c. I’d travel around the world if I got the chance.
d. The distance isn’t important, as long as I get to share the manufacturer’s message. I’d be just as happy at the local school or a far-off trade show. The important thing is sharing knowledge.
You’re feeling the call to share all the industry has to offer. Chances are good you knew when you read the title of this quiz exactly where you stand. Do you have what it takes? Add up the numbers to find out.
> For every question answered with an “a” award 1 point
> For every question answered with a “b” award 2 points
> For every question answered with a “c” award 3 points
> For every question answered with a “d” award 4 points
_________ (a) x 1 = __________
_________ (b) x 2 = __________
_________ (c) x 3 = __________
_________ (d) x 4 = __________
If you score:
11-16 points: Hang in there, the beauty industry still has a lot to offer you. Keep taking classes and practicing your nail skills.
17-30 points: You are well on your way to being the candidate manufacturers are looking for. Keep practicing. Introduce yourself to education managers at the next beauty show and talk to current educators about refining your skills. Find a mentor and soak up everything you can.
31-44 points: You have what it takes to be a nail artist education rock star. Polish up those speaking skills, refine your portfolio, and start thinking about what to pack when you head off to the manufacturer’s training boot camp.
Ready to make the leap? Start here.
> Visit manufacturer websites. Open positions and minimum requirements for applicants are usually posted there. Keep in mind that manufacturers have many career paths available. If you don’t find an educator spot, consider working a hotline or sales position.
> Talk to existing manufacturer representatives to find out more about duties and compensation. Some opportunities pay well, while others offer no compensation but are rich in other rewards.
> Websites will contain links for current education schedules. Attend manufacturer events to get a feel for what is expected and to make sure you are up-to-date on your product information. Mastering product knowledge is essential as many companies have a formal examination process in place to ensure the information being delivered is consistent.
> Many companies will require videos or photos of your work. Some manufacturers will require a headshot and a resume. Start working on a professional portfolio that you can deliver to prospective companies. You never know when the opportunity will arise. (Go to www.nailsmag.com/portfolio for portfolio tips.)
> The process can be long. Be patient. Most companies have a yearly training camp where new educators are evaluated. Don’t get discouraged if you don’t find a company immediately. Ask what you can do to improve your chances of landing one of the coveted spots.
> Realize that it is not all glamour and fun all the time. Being an educator is hard work. Having grace under fire is an essential skill. When the plane is late, the hotel loses your reservation, or your bags don’t make it, you still have to put it aside and deliver a training that is out of the ballpark.